Conviction of Alleged Chicago Police Torture Victim Vacated

CHICAGO (AP) — An Illinois appeals court has vacated the conviction of an alleged Chicago police torture victim who has served nearly 25 years in prison for the 1990 robbery and murder of a cab driver.

In a ruling handed down Wednesday, the appellate court said the denial of Shawn Whirl’s successive post-conviction petitions by the Cook County Circuit Court was erroneous. The court ordered that Whirl receive a new suppression hearing and, “if necessary, a trial.”

Whirl was convicted in 1991 in the fatal shooting of Chicago cabdriver Billy G. Williams and sentenced to a 60-year prison term.

In 2014, a judge denied Whirl’s petition for a new trial even though the Illinois Torture Inquiry and Relief Commission ruled Whirl’s confession had been coerced.

The Cook County state’s attorney’s office did not immediately return telephone calls for comment.